ST. LOUIS (The Chirp) -- As the Cardinals head out west to play the two California American League teams, the eventual match up between the Cardinals and the Angels is dynamic as it reunites the Cards with former first baseman Albert Pujols.
Remarkably, the match up hasn't created a firestorm of conversation here in the STL, probably because the series is on the road, and the fact that since Pujols left, the Cardinals have done nothing but thrive. That's not a dig at Pujols, it's just a fact.
In fact as much as no one is really yacking it up here at home, it appears Pujols is doing some talking on his own. In a new interview published this morning by baseball writer Jon Paul Morsi, Pujols has a lot of positive things to say about his days here.
"He listed them one by one - Nate . . . Josh . . . Rip Rowan . . . C.J. Cherre . . . Chad Blair - from the young clubhouse attendants who cleaned his shoes, to the traveling secretary, to the video coordinator, to senior medical adviser Barry Weinberg, whom Pujols called "the guy who kept me on the field, healthy, for 11 years." He thanked his old manager, Tony La Russa, "who trusted me from Day 1 and always made me feel I belonged there."
Morosi writes: "He reminisced about his teammates, saying he keeps in touch with Molina, Adam Wainwright, Jon Jay, Allen Craig and others. And, yes, he spoke of his appreciation for the team's devoted fans - a group that no longer supports him uniformly, after he left to sign with the Angels for 10 years and $240 million following the 2011 World Series."
But Pujols wasn't all hugs and kisses. He still believes that the front office did him wrong. He's said this before, but as in the past he won't elaborate.
Pujols to Morosi: "I think the only thing I'm bitter about is the way the front office handled it a little bit. I think they should have handled it a little better. I'm bitter about that. They tried to make me look like I was a bad guy. But that's OK. I'm a big boy. Besides that, I also understand there's nothing I can do. Even if I could take it back, I'm happy where I am right now. My goal is to focus and concentrate on what I need to do to help this ballclub win."
So what, exactly, did the Cardinals' front office do?
"It's something I don't want to talk about," he said. "They know what they did. I don't need to talk about that."
As far as St. Louis fans are concerned, he's correct. He doesn't need to talk about it. It's in the past, we've moved on and everyone here is smiling.